fireworks in CA…

We just got back from a COOL  (in more ways than one) vacay in lovely San Diego!  Yep, we were there for the big 15 second fireworks show!  We thought it was a great beginning….only to find out that it was  also the end!  Oh well…..

The temperature was unbearable in Arizona, and with the fourth of July being a holiday….and the fifth of July being a birthday… we loaded up a few of our favorite things…

And drove to Coronado Island!!!  All of our grown kids, and two grandkids got to share the weekend with us!  And I must tell you….the youngest is 27 and the oldest is 33 years……..and they are absolutely hysterical.  We spent the weekend laughing and enjoying the weather with most of it being around the pool!!

Hello, girls!!!! 

Later the girls wanted mama to take them to the water….to play their guitars, of course..


These are true soul surfers…..(just ask them)

So while the fireworks show was a BUST……..the weekend with the family was absolutely PRICELESS!!!!

they did it again…

Not only did they do it again….but they did it quite well!!

Remember THIS?

Well, now how about a little of THIS!!       GREAT JOB, GUYS…AND GALS of Igniter Media!

The Easter Season is coming upon us …

Remember what Christ did on the cross………for You and Me……don’t look to religion for answers…look to God!


oh, i love your shoes….

We are in a war.  How do I know?  Because the Bible says so. (Eph. 6:10-18)  But so far we have decided to wake up and put on our Belt of Truth, our Breastplate of Righteousness and now it’s time to put on our shoes.

Ahh…the shoes of peace.  Wouldn’t you love to own a pair of those?  The kind of peace that gives you a firm footing in life.  Regardless of how hard the enemy hits you…this kind of peace will hold you in place!  (I would like these in a ‘buy one get one’, please)

The Roman soldier’s shoes were not ordinary shoes.  They were made out of bronze or brass and had two parts: 1) the greave 2) the shoe itself.

The greave was a tube-like piece of bronze that began at the top of the knee and extended down past the lower leg, resting on the top of the foot.  It was made from a warped sheet of beautifully tooled metal that had been formed to fit around the calf of the Roman soldiers leg.  The shoe was made of two pieces of metal.  On the top and bottom, the foot was covered with pieces of brass. The sides of the shoe were held together by multiple pieces of leather.  On the bottom, were dangerous spikes that were one or more inches long.  And I thought that I had  KILLER SHOES!!

According to the Apostle Paul, “peace” is an awesome weapon, both defensive and offensive.  It not only protects you, but it also provides you with a ferocious weapon to wield against the enemy when he attacks.  Ephesians 6:15, “And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace”.   If you use the weapon of peace correctly, it will keep spiritual foes where they belong.  UNDER YOUR FEET!!  One good kick from these bad boys and the enemy’s strategies will be crushed!!

We are in a battle against the dominion of thoughts and attitudes and we have to be prepared with inner peace that comes from God. In Jesus, we have that peace.  Ephesians 2:14, “He Himself is our peace.” So when we put on our shoes, we are arming ourselves with God’s peace.  And isn’t that we want the world to see?  When we find ourselves in a situation that is totally out of our control (I’m thinking sickness and everything else that is going on in our country here) we, as Christians, want the world to see the peace of Christ ruling our lives because we are to stand apart! How can we minister to others if we are fearful?

John 14:27, “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you.  Let not your heart be troubled, and neither let it be afraid.”

I want a pair of those shoes!!! I want to step out if faith without being moved by what I’m seeing or hearing.  I want to stick my spikes firmly into the ground and say, “I’m not moving until the work of God in this area of my life is finished.”

cough..sneeze…keeping the bugs away during travel…

Ok…my friends and I just had a loooong flight in March from Philly to Tel Aviv.  We also had some stays in some nice hotels, too…BUT….you just never know what bacteria is lurking around the corner…

I found this article on ‘how not to get sick from a flight’ that you must read…(click the highlighted area)…and then ‘how to avoid getting sick from your hotel room‘ is another article to read.  Whatever you do….do NOT drink from the glass in your hotel room.  DO NOT.  In fact, scroll down to the bottom of the “how to avoid getting sick from your hotel room” page and watch the lovely video…..(and let me know what you think!)

And you thought I couldn’t make it worse???  Check out what Dr. Mercola found:  (yukkkk)……

Restaurant menus

Studies from the Journal of Medical Virology reports germs like the cold and flu viruses can survive for up to 18 hours on a hard surface. When dining in a public place, be conscious to not let the menu touch your flatware and wash your hands after you return it.

Lemon wedges

The Journal of Environmental Health discovered 70 percent of restaurants had contaminated bar fruit with microorganisms like E. coli, fecal bacteria, and other disease causing microbes. By opting out of the garnish for your beverage is a good way to prevent ingestion.

Condiment dispenser

Many people do not wash their hands before eating and they can spread their germs to bottles at the condiment stand. When grabbing for the ketchup, a paper napkin is not sufficient due to the abilities for microorganisms being able to pass through.” (Source: ABCnews Feb. 2011)


Face it.  We can’t live in a bubble…but we CAN do things to prevent ourselves from getting sick.

Just some good information for you jet setters!!!

Seriously?…jet lag?

Oh, it’s here…I’ve been up since 3:11 am, and yes, the “11” is important because I just couldn’t sleep till 3:12…because of jet lag….

So since I’m up, I decided to do a little research on jet lag. As it turns out, I should have done this little project BEFORE I left…but alas, I didn’t…soooo…

Like the cure for the common cold, jet lag remedies can vary. But let’s start here..what IS jet lag?

In simple terms, jet lag is the disruption of your body’s internal clock, or circadian rhythm. This clock sets your sleeping and waking times. It is complex and sensitive. Flying east or west messes it up. That’s because you cross time zones much faster than your body can adjust.  So let’s sit back and let Pilot Paul tell us what to do:
What are common jet lag symptoms? They include:

Impaired Coordination

I’m getting a little lethargic reading these symptoms. Ok…your body can adjust to these changes at a rate of 1 hour per day. So if you flew across 4 time zones, it would take you 4 days To be rid of your jet lag symptoms…..super.

Then I read that flying EAST gives you more jet lag than flying WEST! What?? Then why am I so tired? Maybe it’s the stack of laundry that greeted me when I came home…or maybe I’m faking it to keep from cooking…maybe both.

Here are some tips I found from a pilot…

Help Prevent Jet Lag Before You Leave Home:

These first strategies in avoiding jet lag symptoms begin a few days before your trip. Huh? That’s why reading this now, before you go, can give you the maximum benefit.
1. Get Plenty Of Sleep. NASA found that getting as much sleep as possible beginning two days before your trip is significant in minimizing jet lag symptoms.

That’s often easier said than done and you will have to plan accordingly. Most people get extremely busy before a long trip. There’s packing and tying up all those “loose ends” before they go. What often gets cut short is your sleep.

If you think it is OK to arrive at the airport exhausted so you can sleep better on the plane, think again.

2. Reduce Your Stress. All that running around can make you more stressed. That too will cause more jet lag symptoms.

3. Exercise. If you exercise regularly, make it a priority to keep that routine just before you travel. Also continue it at your destination.

Doing these first three will take planning and discipline. But if you succeed, you’ll be well on your way in avoiding jet lag symptoms.

4. Diet. There is an official “Jet Lag Diet” (found it here) designed to beat your jet lag symptoms. I’ve seen articles promoting it.

But according to NASA: “Recent scientific studies have clearly demonstrated that the “Jet Lag Diet” is not effective in facilitating circadian adaptation” (Source NASA Technical Memorandum DOT/FAA/RD-93/18 pg. 52).

Many of the articles I read did recommend eating lots of starch, greens, and carbohydrates before traveling. I can’t attest to their validity.

However, being healthy will help in avoiding jet lag symptoms and good diet is a part of good health.


1.  Arrive early at the airport…Not rushing to make your flight will help reduce stress and make you more relaxed.  That way you will rest better on the plane.  Also wear ‘airport security friendly shoes’ to streamline the screening process.

2. Begin Adjusting To The New Time Zone And Schedule. When you get on the plane, set your watch to your destination’s time. Then think about when you’ll eat and sleep there. Try to begin eating and sleeping at those times.

Use the travel time as a transition to the new time zone. This simple strategy is one of the best ways of avoiding jet lag symptoms. I always do this.

It’s important to get as much rest on the plane as you can (more on this in a bit). That’s why I say to begin adjusting to the new schedule.

Try to eat at your destination’s meal times. The flight Attendant’s food service schedule likely won’t align with this.

But you can control when you eat on the plane if you bring some food of your own.

Note- You will need to consume or dispose of any fruit and unpackaged meats before you enter the new country. The customs form you fill will specify what you can bring in.

I recommend not watching the in-flight movie. You want to be free to sleep as much as possible. If you really want to watch a movie, you could bring a portable DVD player. Personally, I bring a cassette player and listen to audio books. This allows me to rest my eyes while relaxing. It’s also nice to have someone read me a bedtime story.

One important factor with this strategy: Keep your mind on the new time. Don’t think about what time it is at home. Don’t think about what you’d be doing right then if you were there. This kind of thinking will mess you up more.

Remember, it’s all about adjusting to the new time.

3. Sleep As Much As You Can On the Plane. This is a key factor in avoiding jet lag symptoms. I’ll explain some good ways to sleep in those airplane seats.

If you have a routine you normally go through before going to bed at night, try to do this on the plane too. For example, if you brush your teeth, wash your face, and then read for a few minutes before retiring at home, then do it on the plane too. Studies have proven that this is also helpful for settling in to sleep when you arrive at your destination.

On the long-haul international flights that I fly, we bring an extra pilot. This is so we can rotate out and take rest breaks. We have a crew rest seat in the passenger cabin. I’m very adept at resting in passenger seats.

While on our rest breaks, we take our rest very seriously. That’s because our job is to be at our peak while at the controls. Our 2-3 hour rest break is critical because that is all the rest we get during those over-night flights. You depend on us to be as fresh and alert as possible for the approach and landing. Anything else would be negligent on our part.

That said, there are some travel accessories that will help you get this important sleep enroute. These are things that many crewmembers use on our very important rest breaks. I don’t like to leave home without them:

Travel Pillows I use two. One to support my lower back and one for my head. Without these, I usually can’t sleep on a plane. They’re great for car trips too. I’m a big fan of the ones that wrap around your neck to stabilize your head. They really help you get as comfortable as possible. Without one, your head might flop around, which may wake you up.
Without one of these, I’ve tried leaning against the window. I never seem to get comfortable, and if I am able to sleep, I usually wake up with a very stiff neck or back.

Having your own travel pillow is more sanitary than using the airline pillows. Those are moved around everywhere and the covers are not necessarily changed before every flight.

Sleep Masks. An important low cost and effective travel accessory for avoiding jet lag symptoms is a sleep mask or eye shade.
These are great for sleeping on the plane. One difficulty that many people have sleeping enroute is that the light level changes frequently.

Passengers turn on lights, the movie scene brightens which brightens the cabin, people open their window shades, or the galley curtain opens flooding the area with bright light. Wearing some good eyeshades will make you oblivious and immune to all that.

Noise Canceling Headphones. To sleep on the plane, you need to have it quiet. Since you can’t control the noise level around you, you have to bring the quiet along with you.
How can you do that? Two ways- earplugs or noise canceling headphones.

Ear plugs are terrific for some uses. I always wear them in noisy areas, like on the ramp when I check the jet before flight. While they are small, light, and inexpensive, the drawback is that I find them difficult to sleep with. Something stuck in my ear disturbs my sleep. Every time my head moves and the ear plug is bumped, it’s annoying.

For successful sleep during my important rest breaks, I always use noise canceling headphones. (Note- for successful sleep in hotels, I use a white noise machine. These two devices make a huge difference for me in avoiding jet lag symptoms and sleeping soundly. More on white noise machines later.)

I really love these headphones and think that they are one of the best inventions in years.

Many airlines provide these headphones for their first class passengers. But they have to give them back at the end of the flight.

If you bought yourself a pair, you’d get one of the best first class perks at less cost than a first class upgraded ticket. Then they’re yours to keep and use whenever you’re in a noisy place and want to slip on some peace and quiet.

There are two main reasons that you should avoid taking pills or supplements as jet lag remedies:

1. It Can Be Dangerous! Again this is an area where some “experts” say one thing, but studies say the opposite.
I just read two articles that recommended taking over-the-counter sleeping pills to aid in sleeping on the plane.

Here’s the danger of taking sleeping pills in flight as a jet lag remedy: There was a study reported in England’s Lancet Medical Journal. It blamed 18% of deaths during long-haul flights from blood clots in the lungs. Sleeping pills cause you to sleep without any body movement. This reduces your circulation and increases the chance of blood clotting.

2. It Is Not Necessary. As a pilot, I simply can’t take any substances unless they are approved by the FAA and our Aviation Medical Examiner (the Doctors who give us our flight physicals).
Without pills, we are able to minimize or avoid jet lag symptoms by doing what I’m describing in this article.

You can do it too.

Ok… I didn’t follow a lot of these guidelines and that is probably why I’m a little loopy…

So, next time you fly, try to remember these tips from a pilot! He HAS to be a expert! For more of his info, click here.  I just wish I had seen this earlier!!!

day after…day what…..

Ok, so we’re on our last day in Israel.  It’s going to be action packed and begins at 5:30am and never ends……no, seriously… never ended.  We had a lot of ground to cover and then we had to get back to the hotel, pack and leave for the airport, where our flight left at 11:55pm.  Yes.  11:55 PM!  This was going to be a loooooong, rainy and cold day for us, for sure.  BUT…..when you put on your armor in the morning (Ephesians 6:10-18)you can be prepared for anything!!

So let’s all go to the Garden.  Yes, the Garden of Gethsamane.   Known to have some of the oldest olive trees in the Holy Land!  The trees that are present now are actually the saplings of the original olive trees from the time of Jesus.

Nice to go there and meditate, and imagine that you are at the same tree that Jesus sat, when He prayed.

Again, it was another rainy day but that didn’t keep us from our mission!  We had to see EVERYTHING!

From King David’s Tomb, to the Mount of Olives, to the Garden Tomb….I’m running out of breath.  But one of the coolest places we visited was the Temple Mount.

This is located in one of the world’s most significant pieces of land.  It is the site of the Temples built by Solomon and Herod and is the most sacred site for the Jewish people.  It’s been said that it is the  place where “the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground” (Genesis 2:7) and where Abraham bound Isaac for sacrifice.  It is also the same site that David bought from Araunah (Oman) the Jebusite, for fifty shekels of silver, to build an altar to the Lord.  His son Solomon took seven years to build a small but lavishly decorated Temple here.  This is where the Ark of the Covenant (containing the 10 commandments).  Then the Temple was destroyed by the Babylonians and built about 50 years later.  I could go on and on about who built and who destroyed… but when Caliph Omar went to Jerusalem in 638, he found the hilltop trashed out and desolate.  And since this was the spot that was considered to be Mohammed’s journey to heaven, he decided to build a mosque.

Today the Temple Mount (Dome of the Rock) has been built on the same spot where the Temple once stood.  It is sacred to the Jews, the Christians AND the Muslims….(can’t we all just get along?) It is beautiful and creepy, all at the same time.

But check this out….THAT is the Eastern Gate or the Golden Gate.  This is cool because the Bible indicates that Jesus passed through these gates frequently AND THIS is the gate that He will enter and reign FOREVER!

According to the Bible, the Messiah will come through the Golden Gate of the old city of Jerusalem and will bring about the resurrection of the dead in the cemetery on the mount.  It is to the Mount of Olives that Jesus will return in the last days…..

Ezekiel 44:1-3″ Then he brought me back the way of the gate of the outward sanctuary which looketh toward the east; and it was shut. Then said the Lord unto me; This gate shall be shut, it shall not be opened, and no man shall enter in by it; because the Lord, the God of Israel, hath entered in by it, therefore it shall be shut. It is for the prince; the prince!”


Zechariah 14:4 ” And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south.”

The LORD is going to return and open the gate.    Wow and double wow!


I can’t even remember where the heck we are anymore!!!  These are 17 hour days, people!!!  But I will say that I know we are still in Israel.  And unfortunately we go home tomorrow.  So…no post tomorrow since our flight will be at 12:55pm…..eek!  But THANKS to my WONDERFUL, WONDERFUL husband, I have the luxury of being in First Class going home and I am going to sleep like a baby!!!

Ok…where were we?  After the Holocaust Museum, it was all downhill for the rest of the day for me.  So here are some highlights from there…

We went to (and this is not in order…I’m grasping for some memory here) to the Southern Steps and over to the Dung Gate.  (stop it. .. that is it’s name.)

And those are the original stones too, people!  Isn’t that amazing?  This is over near the south side of the Temple.  We are walking on the same steps that Jesus and the disciples walked.  CR-AAA-ZZY!!!

Mind blowing….

Susan, myself and Anita enjoying the sunshine (not knowing that it would be freeeeeezing cold and rainy for the last two days!)

Next we went to the Temple Institute and got to see where they are making some of the instruments for the third temple and how they are following the Bible EXACTLY (Exodus 25-28)  They have made the gold Menorah (see pic) and have even made the garments that the High Priest will wear.

I was interested in what the girl was saying about rebuilding the Temple, yet saddened at the same time because she does not believe that Jesus is the Messiah.  She  believes that the Messiah is yet to come…..(sigh)

It’s a little blurry because she was quite animated, but you can see the mannequin in the background wearing the priestly garments….well, you can kinda see him.

Next, on to St. Peter in Gallicantu.  This is a church that is overlooking the Kidron Valley and is built over the traditional site of the house of the high priest, Caiaphas.  Jesus was betrayed and arrested in the Garden of Gethsesame and was brought to his house.  Here is where He spent the entire night and it was also the scene of His first trial. (Matt 26:57-63, Mark 14:53-65, Luke 22:63-71, John 18:12-14)  Remember that Peter denied Christ THREE times before the rooster crowed?  Well, this is where the whole thing went down…

The church was built by the Assumptionist Fathers in 1931 and these steps in the hillside are believed to date from the time of Christ.  This pathway is the shortest way from Gethsemane to the upper city and is believed that this is EXACTLY the steps that Jesus walked on………..wowsers..

What’s really cool is that when I went in 2009, we were able to walk down those same steps that Jesus walked on and now they have blocked it off so no one can do that anymore.  But I did….so… yo’ face!

This is the Dungeon/Pit where they brought Jesus after He was arrested.  We had a reading from the Bible and a prayer and it left us all with chill bumps.  I had to touch the walls, wondering if this is where Jesus also laid His hand….

I leave you with that feeling….very emotional knowing that Jesus was being held in this tiny pit……

israel…day 3

Wow.  Information overload!  I didn’t even get around to telling you everything we did yesterday and am excited to even tell you about today too!

But first…..SORRY I couldn’t post more pictures yesterday!  I was SO upset that my computer had no battery and it was late and EVERYONE in the hotel was on the free Wi-Fi thingy.  So, where were we?

OH!  Baptisms in the River Jordan.  Weren’t those little marmut (beaver looking things) CREEPY???  They were floating everywhere, but that didn’t stop us from baptisms!!!

Isn’t that awesome?  Look how many people are getting baptized!  It was a very special time and the water was very cold…..

Next we were on a boat ride on the Sea of Galilee.  This is my favorite place (other than the city of Jerusalem) because most of the miracles that Jesus performed are in and around this area.

It is such a peaceful area and was one of everyone’s favorite part of the tour.  We boarded our boat and had Michaelangelo and Don sing, while Jeff gave a brief sermon.   This picture is dedicated to my friend, Glenda!!!  Woo Hoo!

Here is a picture of the North side of the River Jordan…where it comes off (ok, actually UNDER)  Mt. Heron and flows into the River Jordan.   Not too many people get that picture but we made our tour guide pull over and let us get out!  (Thanks, Sameer!)

THEN…..and this is really cool…..when Jesus healed the two demon possessed men and drove the demons into the herd of pigs.  (Matthew 8:28-34) Well, people…this is the cliff where those pigs rushed down the steep bank and into the lake!  Because they put in a road, the cliff isn’t as steep….but it’s still a really cool place.

HA!!  I never noticed that someone is sitting at the bottom of the picture!  (But I don’t think it is a demon possessed man or pig…soo…it’s cool…)

It was sooo beautiful at sunset.  We also visited the Mount of Beatitudes where Jesus delivered the Sermon on the Mount and Megiddo which dated back to 4000 BC.  The city owas fortified by King Solomon and was made one of his chariot cities.  It  consists of TWENTY layers of civilization…each one built upon the last!  Isn’t that crazy???  We entered on the 11th level, and to put it into perspective, King David’s reign was on the 16th level.  Hmm…..where were the elevators, I wondered?

Well, we went down, down, down to the lowest level  where there was a water shaft.  It was there way to get water to the Kings palace without leaving the city walls.  There are 183 steps leading down into the 120ft shaft to a tunnel that stretches another 215 feet….(Once I got down there, I found this RED BUTTON …..BUT I didn’t push it….and it took every thing in my body, because I really wanted to see what it would do…) For some reason I can’t download that picture of my finger hovering over the button!  O Well!!!

I will leave you with the city lights of Jerusalem!  It is SOOOOOOO gorgeous here and we are in our final hotel in Jerusalem.  It’s late…and I have to go to bed!  I can’t wait for you to see everything!!!

We are kissing you good night!!!!!


Ok, my peeps!!  Tomorrow we leave for Israel!  I am going to be taking my laptop so I can download pictures and you can see what I see….

I’m excited.  I have packed, un-packed, re-packed and then started over again, about 6 times.  I think I might have finally accepted what I am going to be taking.

Today I will spend the time cooking for Jimmy….although he knows and I know that he will be spending the evenings at Mortons Steakhouse.  So….just in case he doesn’t feel like steak…well, he will have spanish rice, beans, chilaques and tortillas.  That way he can have tacos or burritos….whatever his little heart desires….He’s so easy….

So, wish us a safe journey and because of the time change, there might be a day of no posting…..but you will hear from us soon!!!